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Delayed Border Reopening Hurting Both Canadian and US Beef

by 5m Editor
16 June 2004, at 12:00am

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 1538. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.

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Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork

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Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council
and Sask Pork.

Farm-Scape, Episode 1538

The Chair of the Canada Beef Export Federation says US delays in reopening its border to the import of live Canadian cattle is limiting trade opportunities for both nations elsewhere.

The comment period on a proposed US rule that would restore the movement of live Canadian cattle ended in April but American regulators are still responding to comments and have yet to implement new legislation.

Ben Thorlakson, on hand for World Meat Congress in Winnipeg, says the hope is that a rule will be published soon.

"I think the lack of progress on this issue is not only stalling access for Canada, it's stalling access for the United States into Asian markets and also is limiting our access of a complete product list into Mexico.

At this time, we're expecting a rule to be published hopefully very very soon. Canadian producers are becoming very impatient. We're frustrated. We know Canadian beef is safe.

We know we have taken all the measures that the US has taken to mitigate risk and we're just very frustrated that this hasn't been recognized to the point that the rule has been published and the border opened".

Thorlakson says the effect of the delays on international trade should be an incentive for the United States to take the step and publish the rule.

He says, for the past 13 months, we've been looking at access to the US market as just being beyond our grasp.

He says a number of producers are very concerned that this has moved from a regulatory issue to a political issue.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

5m Editor